this became more than just about pictures a long time ago.
this became more than about me, fresh out of the gates.
to my core, i know and believe that God has given us gifts – each & individually – to honor him, to bless others and in turn can feel the most precious fulfillment through using that gift. it can be anything. but if you’re mindful, no matter big or small…your gift can be used to bless others. it can.
last year, i’d been praying. i want to be used, i want to be able to use the platform i have to be able to bless others. to give. to serve. to tell a story and inspire. this idea came to mind. why don’t i just ask who knows of someone who has an inspirational story, surely someone out there does. and why don’t i ask them to tell me about them. and why don’t i get to know them and their story and tell others. because one thing i have learned is, dont even doubt what sharing something, when it’s from the heart and true of you, can do and how it can spread to bless others. dont ever doubt that. and dont be afraid to do it. don’t be frozen in taking a risk, not knowing how it will turn out.
so i asked.
and i started a monthly project called inspira(shown).
and i prayed and asked for the people who need to be blessed and who’s story would inspire others. that they would be brought to me.
and i felt this twang of fear. what if no one comes? but then i thought, if I have a willing heart, surely that will be honored. surely the lord has someone who’s story needs to be told, someone who needs to be given to.
so i asked.
and it wasn’t just one that got submitted.
and i got emails at all hours of the day, randomly. and i’d be frozen outside of the bank crying streams of tears down my cheeks reading the stories people had sent.
so month by month, i met and listened. for hours. and then shot and told their story. kept it real simple.
…and i met the joyful and infectious lindsay who has brain cancer and her fiance who’s mother had died of a brain tumor. and i was struck by them.
…and i met the regal and gracious kathy who has an eye disease that will make her blind, who’s husband is an eye surgeon and cant do anything to help.
…and i met the strong and giggly lisi who had broken out of a life of prostitution, drugs, abuse and is raising a beautiful daughter.
…and i met the invincible and determined lisa who’s husband died while over in afghanistan and left her with 3 kids at home, never having met his several day old baby girl.
and today, i met amber, nate and isaiah.
and these people impacted me. and their stories impacted others. and i felt more than ever, i was doing something that mattered. that i was specifically using a talent that the lord gave me, to honor and bless those that need it.
and then a photographer in germany liked the idea and asked if she could do it with her readers. so she started her own inspira(shown) and it spread. and more people are blessed.
and then things got busy and i started working 7 days a week and all hours of the day and things just got to be so much. this project is not something quick or a small time commitment and in order to keep up with what was coming in, the project slipped away but i have felt such a void since then.
so i’m bringing it back.
because i will always be busy and i’ll always have something to do. but this, this is what fulfills. this is something that matters and we make time for the things that are important. and i’m making time.
so I’m here, back, asking. this is not something i can do on my own. it takes you reading this post. it takes you being willing to send in an email and telling me of someone you know who inspires. it takes an effort. but in the end, things that take effort are the greatest parts of our lives. and it can be anything. anyone. it can be a couple who’d been married for 58 years. it can be about strength, or a journey. it doesn’t have to be sad, it can be a celebration. it can be anything. please don’t push away the thought that this one isn’t good enough. don’t ever doubt what someone’s story can do to inspire another, let alone bless the person you have in your mind.
i will be doing this project bi-monthly. working on one, while the other is up. and vice versa.
and i’ve already shot one today. these days are overwhelming and so emotional for me. and i am reminded, the incredible opportunity i have to come into people’s lives and do something that matters. it’s heavy & a joy on my heart.
nominations sent in now, will be for the following month.
you can read all of the submission info HERE.
thank you for taking the time to read this. it’s an incredible thing to have an idea, be supported in it, and then see the lives it can affect. to be impacted the way i have by the people others’ submitted. this has been a huge part of how and why photography has changed me. i would love to have your support in this and in spreading the word. i’d love to be able to give to someone that needs it.
I’ve started to get a few questions from other photographers regarding them starting up this project as well. i would say yes yes and yes to that. just shoot me and email and we can chat about it. (Andria@AndriaLindquist.com) i would love for this idea to spread.
**also: no one EVER knows how to pronounce it. it’s actually funny. it’s just pronounced inspiration. i was just trying to be witty, inspiration but with a (shown) because of the pictures. no one got it. but that’s ok.